For the most part, Uber has been a good alternative to old-school taxies. The company has strategically gained the backing of major companies in tech, including Google, all the way to important political figures, including LA’s own Mayor Eric Garcetti.
In a recent talk with one of LA’s largest taxi company owners, it was clear that the company and the taxi industry, in general, is in talks with the city about the disruptive and unfair practice that Uber is engaged in. The taxi companies and drivers pay thousands of dollars monthly to the City of Los Angeles and the State of California to comply with all the necessary rules and regulations. From business regulation to consumer safety, there are many logistical procedures in place to make sure this transportation industry is working properly.
Uber bypasses most of those regulations and poses not only certain tax and regulatory evasions, but its practice places consumers in danger. From being underinsured to foregoing regular and random drug tests, which are mandatory for taxi drivers, Uber drivers are ignoring the law.
After a long a pressing talk the taxi company owner mentioned that Garcetti had a $250,000 campaign contribution from Uber (or the CEO) in his run for the LA Mayor last year. According to other sources, it is possible that the Mayor is torn between two interests: the LA Department of Transportation (which controls the vehicles for hire industry) and Uber (which apparently donated $250,000 to his campaign). Reportedly, his taxi company has donated to the campaign as well, but neither contributions show up in the official public reports. Both of these claims are currently being further investigated.
So maybe this is the reason Garcetti has stopped the city from criticizing the tech company and let no one defend and enforce the regulations that control the industry. Looks like Garcetti singlehandedly ordered not to enforce the laws and regulations that are on the books!
Maybe there should be a lawsuit from the industry against Uber AND the city?
We will keep you posted on the latest from the Portland Mayor’s lawsuit against Uber and any further developments from Los Angeles.